Prepared in cooperation with the Louisiana Department of Transportation and DevelopmentWater Resources of St. Helena Parish, LouisianaIntroduction1.05 Mgal/d from groundwater sources and 0.01 Mgal/d fromsurface-water sources1 (table 1). Withdrawals for rural-domesticuse accounted for about 50 percent (0.53 Mgal/d) of the totalwater withdrawn (table 2). Other categories of use includedpublic supply, industrial, and livestock. Water-use data collectedat 5-year intervals from 1960 to 2010 indicated that waterwithdrawals peaked in 1960, dropped to less than 1.00 Mgal/din 1965 and 1975, and have remained between 1.00 and1.50 Mgal/d since 1980 (fig. 2).Information concerning the availability, use, and qualityof water in St. Helena Parish, Louisiana (fig. 1), is criticalfor proper water-resource management. The purpose of thisfact sheet is to present information that can be used by watermanagers, parish residents, and others for stewardship of thisvital resource. Information on the availability, past and currentuse, use trends, and water quality from groundwater andsurface-water sources in the parish is presented. Previouslypublished reports (see References Cited section) and data storedin the U.S. Geological Survey’s National Water InformationSystem (http://waterdata.usgs.gov/nwis) are the primary sourcesof the information presented here.In 2010, about 1.06 million gallons per day (Mgal/d) ofwater were withdrawn in St. Helena Parish, including about90 40'07375800Buck Creekrling0737700038SH-116iv eriverit e RAmSISSApproximate altitude of base of freshgroundwater, in feet below NationalGeodetic Vertical Datum of 1929(modified from Smoot, 1988)—Deepestfreshwater contained within the Jasperequivalent aquifer system2,000 to 2,4992,500 to 2,999hoa Rvny RialbaNatAA' Line of section (see fig. 3)era nyNatalbg Branc hLittlet HoTickfaw subbasinRiverh0EXPLANATIONaTangipverTickfaw RikeeMontpelierBase modified from U.S. Geological Survey digital dataAlbers Equal-Area Conic projectionNorth American Datum of 19830GULF OF MEXICO ST ELIVINGSTONPARISHa ncHog BrSH-56stWe30 40'GreensburglvTweBlackCreekAmite subbasinEASTST HELENAFELICIANAPARISHPARISH30 50'EASTBATON ROUGEPARISHreekLiverpoolSandy RunDarlington Joseph BranchDaABer CaveMISSISSIPPILOUISIANATEXASstEaCreek31 00'TangipahoasubbasinFoChanney Creekrk91 00'MISAARKANSASIPPI90 30'miteRiver90 50'1Water-withdrawal data are based on estimated or reported site-specific dataand aggregated data, which are distributed to sources. For a full description ofwater-use estimate methodology, see “Data Collection” in Sargent (2011). Tabulation of numbers across text and tables may result in different totals because ofrounding; nonrounded numbers are used for calculation of totals.River subbasin boundarySH-56Well for which hydrograph is shown(see fig. 4)07377000U.S. Geological Survey surface-waterdischarge site and number07375800U.S. Geological Survey surface-waterquality site and number (see table 4)10 MILES10 KILOMETERSFigure 1. Location of study area, St. Helena Parish, Louisiana.U.S. Department of the InteriorU.S. Geological SurveyFact Sheet 2016–3047July 2016
Aquifer, aquifer system, orsurface-water bodyGroundwaterUpland terrace aquifer0.70Evangeline equivalent aquifer system0.00Jasper equivalent aquifersystem0.35Catahoula aquifer0.00Miscellaneous streamsSurface waterGroundwater ResourcesPrimary sources of fresh groundwater (water with achloride concentration of 250 milligrams per liter [mg/L] orless) in St. Helena Parish are, from shallowest to deepest, theChicot equivalent, Evangeline equivalent, and Jasper equivalentaquifer systems and the Catahoula aquifer (fig. 3). Deeperaquifers underlying the parish contain saltwater. The base offresh groundwater ranges from greater than 2,000 feet (ft) belowthe National Geodetic Vertical Datum of 1929 (NGVD 29) inST. HELENA PARISHTANGIPAHOA PARISHTable 1. Water withdrawals, in million gallons per day, by sourcein St. Helena Parish, Louisiana, 2010 (Sargent, 2011).0.01Total1.050.01WEST200Table 2. Water withdrawals, in million gallons per day, by usecategory in St. Helena Parish, Louisiana, 2010 (modified fromSargent, 2011).Use categoryBEND INSECTIONFEET400Generalized surface profileSurface waterTotalPublic ral 0.011.06“1,200-foot” sandAnnual withdrawal, in million gallons per per equivalent aquifer d-2,0001.25?-1,200-2,200NGVD 29-600Evangeline equivalent aquifer system-1,800GroundwaterSurface owerPonchatoulaaquifer“1,700-foot” oot” sand-1,4001.50“800-foot” sand d“1,000-foot”otsan” sand“1,200-fo“800-foot” sand“1,000-foot” sand-400GroundwaterUpland terrace aquiferChicot equivalent aquifer systemNGVD 29-200BEND INSECTIONA050510 MILES10 KILOMETERSVERTICAL SCALE GREATLY EXAGGERATED0.75EXPLANATIONFreshwater in sand0.50Clay?0.250.00Lithologic contact—Separates clay and sandlayers. Dashed where approximate. Queriedwhere uncertainHydrogeologic contact—Defines boundarybetween conjoined or merged aquifersHydrogeologic contact—Defines boundarybetween aquifers or aquifer systems1960 1965 1970 1975 1980 1985 1990 1995 2000 2005 2010YearFigure 2. Water withdrawals in St. Helena Parish, Louisiana,1960–2010 (Sargent, 2011).Figure 3. West-to-east hydrogeologic section through St. HelenaParish, Louisiana (modified from Griffith, 2003). Trace of sectionshown on figure 1.
The Chicot Equivalent Aquifer SystemThe sole aquifer composing the Chicot equivalent aquifersystem in St. Helena Parish is the Upland terrace aquifer, whichis a broad, discontinuous, near-surface aquifer that is presentthroughout the parish. The Upland terrace aquifer extendswestward into East Feliciana Parish, eastward into TangipahoaParish, and northward into Mississippi. The aquifer crops outalong ridges and alongside stream valleys within the parishand generally dips south to southwest at a rate of 10–30 ft permile. Near the southern parish line, the Upland terrace aquifercorrelates with the “400-foot” and “600-foot” sands of theBaton Rouge area. Upland terrace sediments range in grainsize from clay through silt and sand to gravel and can be over300 ft thick. The aquifer is composed primarily of medium- tocoarse-grained sand (Morgan, 1963). Regionally, the proximityof the Upland terrace aquifer to the surface allows the aquiferto be recharged by infiltration of rainfall and to transmit someof this water to recharge deeper aquifers underlying the parish(Griffith, 2003).In 2009, water levels in the Upland terrace aquifer in St.Helena Parish ranged from a low of about 75 ft above NGVD29 along the southern parish line to a high of more than 250 ftabove NGVD 29 in the northeastern corner of the parish. Thegeneral direction of groundwater flow was southward, withlocalized flow direction towards the Amite River and theTickfaw River. In St. Helena Parish, the water-level surfacegenerally follows the topography (Tomaszewski, 2011). Thewater-level hydrograph of well SH-56, located in the extremesouthwestern corner of the parish (fig. 1) and screened in theUpland terrace aquifer, indicates that water levels generallyfluctuate less than 3 ft per year (fig. 4).State well-registration records listed 1,201 active waterwells screened in the Upland terrace aquifer in St. HelenaParish in 2015, including 1,074 domestic, 70 public supply,49 irrigation, and 8 industrial. Depths of these wells rangedfrom 18 to 366 ft below land surface. Reported yields fromwells screened in the Upland terrace aquifer in St. Helena Parishranged from 5 to 225 gallons per minute (gal/min) (LouisianaDepartment of Natural Resources, 2015). In 2010, withdrawalsfrom the Upland terrace aquifer in St. Helena Parish totaledabout 0.70 Mgal/d (table 1) and included about 0.07 Mgal/dfor public supply, 0.53 Mgal/d for rural-domestic use, and0.09 Mgal/d for livestock (B.P. Sargent, U.S. Geological Survey,written commun., 2015).75Well: SH-56Aquifer: Upland terraceAquifer system: Chicot equivalentAltitude of land surface: 77 ft above NGVD 29Well depth: 160 ft below land surface70Water level, in feetthe northwestern part of the parish to less than 3,000 ft belowNGVD 29 along the southern parish boundary (fig. 1; Smoot,1988). The primary source of recharge to the freshwater aquifersin St. Helena Parish comes from infiltration of precipitationfalling in a large area extending from within the parish toabout 100 miles northward into the State of Mississippi.Flow from streams may also contribute recharge to a lesserdegree than precipitation. Discharge from aquifers in theparish is by leakage into adjacent aquifers, flow into streams,and withdrawals from wells. All of the aquifers containingfreshwater in the parish generally dip south to southwesttowards the Gulf of Mexico (Griffith, 2003).6560552000Well: SH-116Aquifer: "2,800-foot" sandAquifer system: Jasper equivalentAltitude of land surface: 305 ft above NGVD 29Well depth: 1,634 ft below land surface2002200420062008201020122014YearFigure 4. Water levels in well SH-56 screened in the Uplandterrace aquifer and well SH-116 screened in the Jasper equivalentaquifer system in St. Helena Parish, Louisiana (see fig. 1 for welllocations; U.S. Geological Survey, 2012a). Land surface is measuredin feet (ft) above the National Geodetic Vertical Datum of 1929(NGVD 29).The Evangeline Equivalent Aquifer SystemThe aquifers composing the Evangeline equivalent aquifersystem in St. Helena Parish are the “800-foot,” “1,000-foot,”“1,200-foot,” “1,500-foot,” and “1,700-foot” sands of theBaton Rouge area (fig. 3). These aquifers contain freshwaterand are generally fine- to coarse-grained sand. Layers of clayusually separate the individual sands; however, many sandsmerge with overlying and underlying sands (Griffith, 2003).The altitude of the base of the aquifer system ranges from about450 ft below NGVD 29 near the northern parish line to about1,200 ft below NGVD 29 near the southern parish line (Griffith,2003). In 2003, water levels in the “1,500-foot” and “1,700foot” sands ranged from about 215 ft above NGVD 29 in theextreme northeastern corner of the parish to about 35 ft belowNGVD 29 in the extreme southwestern corner of the parish. Thedirection of groundwater flow in the parish was generally tothe southwest towards withdrawal centers in East Baton RougeParish (Prakken, 2004).State well-registration records listed 26 active water wellsscreened in the Evangeline equivalent aquifer system in St.Helena Parish in 2015, including 19 domestic, 3 irrigation,3 public supply, and 1 industrial. Depths of these wells rangedfrom 120 to 665 ft below land surface. Reported yields fromwells screened in the Evangeline equivalent aquifer systemin St. Helena Parish ranged from about 40 to 300 gal/min(Louisiana Department of Natural Resources, 2015). In 2010,there were no reported water withdrawals from the Evangelineequivalent aquifer system in St. Helena Parish (B.P. Sargent,U.S. Geological Survey, written commun., 2015).The Jasper Equivalent Aquifer SystemThe aquifers composing the Jasper equivalent aquifersystem in St. Helena Parish are the “2,000-foot,” “2,400-foot,”and “2,800-foot” sands of the Baton Rouge area (fig. 3). These
aquifers also generally contain freshwater and are composed offine- to coarse-grained sand. Layers of clay usually separate theindividual sands; however, many sands merge with overlyingand underlying sands (Griffith, 2003).The altitude of the base of the aquifer system is not welldefined but is probably about 1,800 ft below NGVD 29 nearthe northern parish line to about 2,000 ft below NGVD 29 nearthe southern parish line (Griffith, 2003). In 2006, the generaldirection of groundwater flow in the “2,800-foot” sand in St.Helena Parish was to the southwest, and water levels rangedfrom about 80 ft above NGVD 29 in the northeastern cornerof the parish to about 20 ft above NGVD 29 in the extremesouthwestern corner (Fendick, 2007). The hydrograph of wellSH-116, located in north-central St. Helena Parish (fig. 1) andscreened in the “2,800-foot” sand, indicates that water levelshave fluctuated up to 5 ft annually and generally declined from2002 to 2011 (fig. 4).State well-registration records listed 18 active water wellsscreened in the Jasper equivalent aquifer system in St. HelenaParish in 2010, including 14 public supply, 3 industrial, and1 domestic. Depths of these wells ranged from 1,422 to 2,120 ftbelow land surface. Reported yields from wells screened in theJasper equivalent aquifer system in St. Helena Parish rangedfrom about 60 to 1,200 gal/min (Louisiana Department ofNatural Resources, 2015). In 2010, withdrawals from the Jasperequivalent aquifer system in St. Helena Parish were about0.35 Mgal/d (table 1) and included about 0.32 Mgal/d for publicsupply and 0.03 Mgal/d for industrial use (B.P. Sargent, U.S.Geological Survey, written commun., 2015).Catahoula AquiferThe Catahoula aquifer is present and contains freshwaterat altitudes from about 2,000 to 2,450 ft below NGVD 29in central St. Helena Parish and between about 1,900 andabout 2,350 ft below NGVD 29 in the northwestern cornerof the parish. Saltwater is present in the deepest sand layerscomposing the aquifer (Griffith, 2003). State well-registrationrecords reported one domestic well registered at a depth of2,135 ft yielding 70 gal/min (Louisiana Department of NaturalResources, 2015).Groundwater QualityA statistical summary of selected water-qualitycharacteristics for freshwater samples collected from the Uplandterrace aquifer (15 wells) and Jasper equivalent aquifer system(12 wells) indicates that sample water is generally soft2 anddoes not exceed the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’sSecondary Maximum Contaminant Levels3 (SMCLs) for2Hardness ranges, expressed as milligrams per liter of calcium carbonate, areas follows: 0–60, soft; 61–120, moderately hard; 121–180, hard; greater than180, very hard (Hem, 1985).3The SMCLs are nonenforceable Federal guidelines regarding cosmeticeffects (such as tooth or skin discoloration), aesthetic effects (such as taste,odor, or color), or technical effects (such as damage to water equipment orreduced effectiveness of treatment for other contaminants) of drinking water.SMCLs were established as guidelines by the U.S. Environmental ProtectionAgency (2016).chloride and dissolved solids (table 3). Locally, concentrationsof iron and manganese may greatly exceed SMCLs in the Jasperequivalent aquifer system. Limited samples and stratigraphicposition indicated that water quality in the Evangeline equivalentaquifer system in St. Helena Parish is generally between thatof the Upland terrace aquifer and the Jasper equivalent aquifersystem (U.S. Geological Survey, 2012b).Surface-Water ResourcesSurface-water resources in St. Helena Parish are presentin the regional Lake Maurepas drainage basin. In St. HelenaParish, the Lake Maurepas Basin (Hydrologic Unit Code [HUC]080702) is divided into three subbasins: the Amite subbasin(HUC 08070202) drains the western third of the parish, theTickfaw subbasin (HUC 08070203) drains the central part of theparish, and the Tangipahoa subbasin (HUC 08070205) drainsa small area in the northeastern corner of the parish (fig. 1).Streams in St. Helena Parish generally flow in a southerlydirection, receiving flow from precipitation and groundwaterwithin the parish and from areas to the north in Mississippi. In2010, about 0.01 Mgal/d of surface water were withdrawn frommiscellaneous streams (table 1) in St. Helena Parish for livestock(table 2).Amite SubbasinThe Amite subbasin is drained primarily by the Amite River,which flows along most of the western border of St. HelenaParish (fig. 1). Multiple smaller streams flow into the AmiteRiver, including the East Fork Amite River, Sandy Run, andDarling, Buck, Black, and Channey Creeks. The annual averageflow of the Amite River near Darlington (site number 07377000)was about 906 cubic feet per second (ft3/s) during 1951–2014from a drainage area of about 580 square miles (mi2) (U.S.Geological Survey, 2015). During this same period, the highestand lowest annual average flows were 1,924 ft3/s during 1982–83and 328 ft3/s during 1999–2000.Tickfaw SubbasinThe Tickfaw subbasin is drained primarily by the TickfawRiver, which originates in Mississippi, flows into St. HelenaParish, and flows out into Livingston Parish to the south ofMontpelier (fig. 1). Tributaries of the Tickfaw River includeTwelvemile Creek, Joseph Branch, and East and West HogBranches (fig. 1). The Natalbany River starts in St. HelenaParish and flows into Tangipahoa Parish and back into and outof St. Helena Parish before flowing into the Tickfaw River inLivingston Parish. The Little Natalbany River also begins in St.Helena Parish and flows into Livingston Parish. The average flowof the Tickfaw River near Liverpool (site number 07375800)was about 111 ft3/s during 1956–2014 from a drainage area ofabout 89.7 mi2 (U.S. Geological Survey, 2015). During this sameperiod, the highest and lowest annual average flows were 208ft3/s during 2012–13 and 52 ft3/s during 2005–6.
Table 3. Summary of selected water-quality characteristics for freshwater in the Upland terrace aquifer and Jasper equivalent aquifersystem in St. Helena Parish, Louisiana (U.S. Geological Survey, 2012b).[Values are in milligrams per liter, except as noted. C, degrees Celsius; PCU, platinum cobalt unit; µS/cm, microsiemen per centimeter; SU, standard unit;CaCO3, calcium carbonate; µg/L, microgram per liter; , less than; SMCL, Secondary Maximum Contaminant Level established by the U.S. EnvironmentalProtection Agency (2016); NA, not applicable]Temperature ( C)Color,(PCU)20.85Specificconductance,field (µS/cmat 25 C)pH,field(SU)Hardness(as CaCO3)Iron,filtered(µg/L asFe)Manganese,filtered(µg/L as ed(as Cl)Upland terrace aquifer, 1940–2001 (15 wells)Median325.2610th percentile20.03244.443.9 10 32590th percentile22.916635.6139.621011046Number of samplesPercentage of samplesthat do not exceedSMCLs139131315157812NA89NA0NA100868810040 10233Jasper equivalent aquifer system, 1954–84 (12 wells)Median27.2163378.633.910th percentile23.451717.012.120 1015490th percentile30.0304549.0114.51,000335309Number of samplesPercentage of samplesthat do not 030050500SMCLsNA15NA6.5–8.5Tangipahoa SubbasinReferences CitedThe Tangipahoa subbasin is present only in a small area inthe northeastern corner of the parish and is drained by BeaverCreek. Beaver Creek flows south and east into Tangipahoa Parish,eventually flowing into the Tangipahoa River.Fendick, R.B., Jr., 2007, Louisiana ground-water map no. 22—Generalizedpotentiometric surface of the Amite aquifer and “2,800-foot” sand of the BatonRouge area in southeastern in Louisiana, June–August 2006: U.S. GeologicalSurvey Scientific Investigations Map 2984, 1 sheet, accessed March 2, 2012, athttp://pubs.usgs.gov/sim/2984/.Surface-Water QualityGriffith, J.M., 2003, Hydrogeologic framework of southeastern Louisiana:Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development Water ResourcesTechnical Report no. 72, 21 p., 18 pls.Water samples taken from the Amite River near Darlingtonduring the period 1961–76 and from the Tickfaw River nearLiverpool during the period 1961–98 were found to be generallysoft with respect to hardness and did not exceed SMCLs for pH andconcentrations of chloride, sulfate, or iron (table 4). Limited dataindicated that dissolved-oxygen concentrations in these rivers weregenerally greater than 5 mg/L, which is considered the minimumvalue for a diverse population of fresh, warmwater biota, includingsport fish (Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality, 2008).Median values for pH in the Amite and Tickfaw Rivers were 6.6and 6.3 standard units, respectively. Amite River samples presentedmedian values for acid neutralizing capacity of 10 mg/L unfilteredas calcium carbonate and for potassium concentrations of 1 mg/Lfiltered. Tickfaw River samples presented median values for acidneutralizing capacity of 8.5 mg/L unfiltered as calcium carbonateand for potassium concentrations of 0.7 mg/L filtered (U.S.Geological Survey, 2012b).Hem, J.D., 1985, Study and interpretation of the chemical characteristics of natural water (3d ed.): U.S. Geological Survey Water-Supply Paper 2254, 264 p.,accessed February 20, 2013, at ana Department of Environmental Quality, 2008, Environmental Regulatory Code, Title 33, Part IX, Subpart 1: Baton Rouge, Louisiana Departmentof Environmental Quality, accessed June 9, 2009, at ault.aspx.Louisiana Department of Natural Resources, 2015, Strategic Online NaturalResources Information System (SONRIS): Louisiana Department of NaturalResources database, accessed May 18, 2015, at http://sonris.com/.Morgan, C.O., 1963, Ground-water resources of East Feliciana and West FelicianaParishes, Louisiana: Louisiana Department of Public Works, 58 p.Prakken, L.B., 2004, Louisiana ground-water map no. 17—Generalized potentiometric surface of the Kentwood aquifer system and the “1,500-foot” and“1,700-foot” sands of the Baton Rouge area in southeastern Louisiana, March–April 2003: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Map 2862, 2sheets, accessed February 24, 2012, at http://pubs.er.usgs.gov/publication/sim2862.
Table 4. Summary of selected water-quality characteristics for the Amite River and Tickfaw River in St. Helena Parish, Louisiana (U.S.Geological Survey, 2012b).[Values are in milligrams per liter, except as noted. µS/cm, microsiemen per centimeter; C, degrees Celsius; SU, standard unit; CaCO3, calcium carbonate;µg/L, microgram per liter; —, insufficient data; SMCL, Secondary Maximum Contaminant Level established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency(2016); NA, not applicable]Specificconductance,field(µS/cm at25 cium,filtered(as Ca)Magnesium,filtered(as Mg)Sodium,filtered(as Na)Chloride,filtered(as Cl)Sulfate,filtered(as SO4)Iron,filtered(µg/L asFe)Amite River near Darlington, 1961–761Median3610th 3.03.40.1—90th percentile42—Number of samples164166.9101616161616162.1—2Percentage of samplesthat do not faw River near Liverpool, 1961–982Median3210th .63.30.2—90th percentile40—Number of samples125111212121111122.1—5Percentage of samplesthat do not 126.96.36.199.0SMCLsNANA6.5–8.5NANASite number 07377000.1Site number 07375800.2Sargent, B.P., 2011, Water use in Louisiana, 2010: Louisiana Department ofTransportation and Development Water Resources Special Report no. 17,135 p.Smoot, C.W., 1988, Louisiana hydrologic atlas map no. 3—Altitude of the baseof freshwater in Louisiana: U.S. Geological Survey Water-Resources Investigations Report 86–4314, 1 sheet, accessed November 2, 2011, at szewski, D.J., 2011, Water-level surface in the Chicot equivalent aquifersystem in southeastern Louisiana, 2009: U.S. Geological Survey ScientificInvestigations Map 3173, 2 pls., accessed February 24, 2012, at http://pubs.usgs.gov/sim/3173/.U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 2016, Secondary Drinking Water Standards: Guidance for Nuisance Chemicals, accessed April 13, 2016, at calsU.S. Geological Survey, 2012a, Groundwater levels for Louisiana: NationalWater Information System Web Interface, accessed February 18, 2012, U.S. Geological Survey, 2012b, Water-quality samples for Louisiana: NationalWater Information System Web Interface, accessed February 6, 2012, .S. Geological Survey, 2015, National Water Information System: WebInterface, USGS Water Data for Louisiana, accessed June 1, 2015, at http://waterdata.usgs.gov/la/nwis/nwis.This fact sheet was published by the U.S. GeologicalSurvey in cooperation with the Louisiana Departmentof Transportation and Development (DOTD).Thanks are given to Zahir “Bo” Bolourchi, Director,Water Resources Programs, Louisiana DOTD, whocontributed to the content of the fact sheet.By Vincent E. White and Lawrence B. PrakkenFor additional information, contact:Director, USGS Lower Mississippi-Gulf Water Science Center3535 S. Sherwood Forest Blvd., Suite 120Baton Rouge, LA 70816E-mail: gs-w-lmg center [email protected]: (225) 298–5490Telephone: (225) 298–5481Home Page: http://la.water.usgs.govISSN 2327-6916 (print)ISSN 2327-6932 (online)http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/fs20163047
wells screened in the Upland terrace aquifer in St. Helena Parish ranged from 5 to 225 gallons per minute (gal/min) (Louisiana Department of Natural Resources, 2015). In 2010, withdrawals from the Upland terrace aquifer in St. Helena Parish totaled about 0.70 Mgal/d (table 1) and included about 0.07 Mgal/d